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T?olo condemns abuse of the elderly

Limpho Sello

THE Acting Minister of Social Development, Temeki T?olo, has condemned the different forms of abuse perpetrated against the elderly.

Mr T?olo said this recently in the run up to the commemoration of the World Elder Abuse Awareness Day at the Ministry’s offices on Saturday.

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is held on 15 June annually and is observed by the United Nations (UN). The day came about as a result of UN resolution 66/127.

Mr T?olo said with a growing global population of elderly people and as longevity increases, abuse of the elderly is an increasing and serious problem that affects health and human rights and can cause death. He said it is vital to raise awareness of the abuse of the elderly and thus prevent it whenever possible.

Mr T?olo said it was disheartening that the abuse is often perpetrated by people close to the victims.

“We know that the elderly are always beaten up and often face grueling deaths while their property and money is taken from them by force,” Mr T?olo said.

“It is very unfortunate that all these things are done by people who are entrusted to care for the elderly.”

Mr T?olo said they have also received reports of rampant abuse of the elderly at pensions pay points where they are conned by unscrupulous vendors who force them to purchase goods they do not want to buy at exorbitant prices.

“There is a high incidence of fraud close to the pensions pay points where the elderly lose money to vendors who force them to buy goods they do not want and often at exorbitant prices,” Mr T?olo said.

He said the ministry is also concerned about the disrespect with which the elderly are treated by providers of different services.

Mr T?olo added that the ministry is also working towards the enactment of a law that protects the elderly. He said the fight against the abuse needs to be a national cause where families, communities and the government all assume responsibility.


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